Did you come across WDAGUtilityAccount when looking through the list of user accounts? Don’t worry, this particular user account is not a virus and your system is not affected. It is part of most versions of Windows 11/10 Pro, Enterprise and Education.
But what does it do? What is WDAGUtilityAccount? Read on to find out what this user account is and if you can delete it.
What is WDAGUtilityAccount
WDAGUtilityAccount is a built-in user account. It is part of Windows Defender Application Guard (WDAG), which has been part of Windows 10 since version 1709. Usually, Application Guard is disabled by default. You can find it by the . to open Command Prompt and typing the net user order.
If your computer is running on a Pro version of Windows, you can also access this user account using the Computer Management tool.
1. Type “computer management” in the Windows search box and click on the first result, the Computer Management app.
2. In the right part of the app, go to System tools † Local users and groups and click on the Users folder. That’s where you’re going to find the WDAGUtilityAccount user account.
As mentioned, this user account is used by the Windows Defender Application Guard tool. This tool is part of Microsoft Edge and Office 365 and is used to enable private browsing sessions. In other words, you can open a browser session completely isolated from your desktop. If you encounter malicious software during that session, it will not reach the rest of your system.
The tool opens the website you are visiting in a virtualized sandbox and WDAGUtilityAccount acts as the user account for that virtualization-based container. The user account is essential for the overall security of your Windows 11/10 system.
Is it safe to remove WDAGUtilityAccount or change its settings?
Since this is a system managed user account, you cannot delete it. Even if you could, you wouldn’t want to. It is an important security element that protects you against specific security risks. The account may occasionally ask for administrator privileges when you delete certain types of files, but the account will not negatively affect your computer.
That said, you can access specific settings and change them if needed.
Return to the Computer Management utility and double-click the WDAGUtilityAccount user account. A window will open with various settings.
You should leave the default settings as they are unless you have an explicit reason to change them. If the account is disabled, as in the image above, you must uncheck it Account is disabled choice.
You can also rename the user account, but we recommend that you don’t. It will break the Windows Defender Application Guard tool or prevent certain security features from working properly.
Essentially, WDAGUtilityAccount is a harmless, system-managed user account that should be left alone. It does not have any negative impact on your computer.
Enable Application Monitoring
As mentioned, Application Guard is usually disabled by default. Here’s how to enable it on Windows 11/10 Pro. You can also apply these steps to Windows 11/10 Enterprise and other versions that support WDAG.
1. Go to Control Panel > Programs > Programs and Features and click Enable or disable Windows features†
2. Scroll through the list of features until you find Microsoft Defender Application Guard and check the box next to it.
3. Click on the Okay and restart your computer for the changes to take effect.
If you can’t find this feature or it’s greyed out, your computer doesn’t support Application Guard or you’re not using any of the supported versions of Windows 11/10, such as Windows 11/10 Pro or Enterprise. Upgrade to a higher version of Windows if you are using the Windows Home edition.